Child's Nervous System

, Volume 11, Issue 8, pp 443–448

Radiotherapy in the treatment of low-grade astrocytomas

II. The physical and cognitive sequelae

Authors

  • Richard D. Chadderton
    • Department of Neurological SurgeryRoyal Manchester Children's Hospital
  • Charles G. H. West
    • Department of Neurological SurgeryRoyal Manchester Children's Hospital
  • Stephan Schulz
    • Department of Neurological SurgeryRoyal Manchester Children's Hospital
  • D. Christopher Quirke
    • Department of Neurological SurgeryRoyal Manchester Children's Hospital
  • Rao Gattamaneni
    • Christie Hospital
    • Holt Radium Institute
  • Robert Taylor
    • Hope Hospital
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/BF00334961

Cite this article as:
Chadderton, R.D., West, C.G.H., Schulz, S. et al. Child's Nerv Syst (1995) 11: 443. doi:10.1007/BF00334961

Abstract

The purpose of the present study was to define the late effects, both physical and psychological, of treating low-grade astrocytomas with radiotherapy. Fifty patients, half of whom received radiotherapy, underwent an assessment of neurological and neuropsychological function. There was no difference in neurological function between the two groups. The radiotherapy recipients, including those with cerebellar tumours, performed significantly worse on measures of intelligence and information processing. In addition, there was a greater incidence of special education needs in the irradiated group. We conclude that children with low-grade astrocytomas who receive radiotherapy have no greater neurological deficit but that the use of radiotherapy carries a penalty in terms of long-term cognitive function and confirmed the findings of many previous reports that supratentorial irradiation is detrimental. More surprisingly, it has been demonstrated that local field irradiation to the posterior fossa can also produce significant cognitive impairment.

Key words

Low-grade astrocytomasRadiotherapyCognitive function

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1995